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  • by Ezio Manzini
    The on-going transition asks for diffuse design capabilities. And therefore for an original knowledge: design knowledge capable to feed the broad co-design processes that will have to drive the needed socio-technical changes. Where and how is this design knowledge produced? Where and how will it be produced in future, given that the demand for it will inevitably grow in the transition towards sustainability? The traditional answer falls on the existence of (and need to develop) public and private research centers. However, in my view, this answer is incomplete, and more importantly it leads us to think that the design research we are talking about can be limited to a few research professionals. In a connected world this is no longer so. In a connected world designing networks also tend to become design research networks: research networks that produce “constructive enquiry” at their nodes.

  • by Anna Meroni, International Coordinator
    Dear DESISers, it seems that the (im)possible mission of turning DESIS into an Association is almost accomplished: the “constitution paper” with the new statute of DESIS signed by the initial founding members is about to be back at home in Politecnico for the formal establishment of the association. This means that soon we can start with the formal applications by the existing Labs and with the requests for application of the new labs that are in the pipeline. But, we do not want to make it just a formal act. We aim to make it an opportunity to update the network about what’s going on in the different labs and to open up new challenges.

Emerging Practices: Design Research and Education Conference 2014

The idea of ‘developing’ is controversial. On the one hand, the word developing often implies inferiority, and is used as a synonym of underdeveloped. On the other hand, developing is the present participle of to develop, which literally means to bring out the capabilities or possibilities of something and a process of evolving toward a more advanced or effective state.

For instance, a developing country is defined in terms of a lower standard of living, less-developed industrial base, and lower Human Development Index in comparison with other developed countries. This is a prevailing understanding of the term developing. Arguably, the status of being ‘developing’ can nevertheless be a great asset to a country. It can provide energy and space to initiate a series of sustainable paradigm shifts, including reshaping values, changing rules of action, ways of living and production, and ultimately reforming the whole society and economy. The rapidly changing dynamics in developing countries make major transformations possible.

Aveiro CUMULUS Conference

Dear all,
kindly hosted by the Cumulus Conference “What’s on” at Universidade de Aveiro – ID+, on May 8-10 2014, we have the opportunity to experiment with a new DESIS showcase, where the projects of the DESIS Labs will be presented and discussed in a brand new way. We wish to understand how this new way, based on the adoption of common issues as guidelines, can help generating transversal knowledge for further reflections. Have a look, if you like, to the DESIS editorials now on line for more considerations about this.

MILANO SOCIAL INNOVATION CITY 2015

Hai un’idea per migliorare la qualità della vita nella tua città?

MILANO SOCIAL INNOVATION CITY 2015

Hai un’idea per migliorare la qualità della vita nella tua città?
Hai i sintomi dell’innovatore sociale?
Vieni a scoprire il progetto TRANSITION per far fare un passo avanti alla tua idea!

Designers Telling Stories

Nowadays we are encountering many different ways in which designers are telling the stories of social innovation. This phenomena makes us wonder how we can start a reflection on the philosophical value of storytelling, and see whether this can be somehow helpful in feeding our practice as designer. Amongst the many philosophers who have been working on the idea of storytelling, we let ourselves be inspired by the work of the German philosopher Hannah Arendt. She believes that storytelling is in essence the act to recognise the potentiality that is hiding behind the mainstream, and be able to read this potentiality, to translate it, to tell its story. This act of telling stories is what Hannah Arendt recognises as the real political action that opens up the idea of public space, where everybody is invited to take part in the discussion of which the decisions upon the polis, on the common realm, are taken together. This act of telling stories brings together the act of telling and the one of making, as it used to be in the Greek world poiseis. Storytelling is to Arendt poetry: an action that takes place through words. Through storytelling the potentialities of the past, what was already there and was not manifested yet because not belonging to the mainstream, finally has the chance to become actual, to show its pregnancy.

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The full series of open lectures are available at DESIS Public & Collaborative initiative website (http://www.desis-clusters.org). 

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